The 19th International Conference of Miniaturized Systems for Chemistry and Life Sciences held in Gyeonju, South Korea on October 2015 saw the 8th Art in Science competition.
The judges thought the quality of submissions was really high and the Lab on a Chip team would like to thank all the contributors. Please join us at Lab on a Chip in congratulating all of our prize winners.
The Art in Science award is sponsored by NIST and supported by MicroTAS, the Chemical and Biological Microsystems Society (CBMS) and the Lab on a Chip journal. The award consists of a monetary prize ($2500), an award certificate, and the coveted front cover of the Lab on a Chip journal.
The third international Micro-Med-A workshop took place in Stellenbosch, South Africa, from 16-19 September 2015. The workshop provided the perfect platform to bring together leaders in the field of microsystems technologies as well as industry partners and medical experts to discuss new ideas and strategies to develop cutting edge point-of-care (PoC) diagnostics to address solutions for real world problems by building a collaborative network across various disciplines and by crossing geographical borders.
The theme for the workshop was the development of rapid point-of-care technologies for various applications relating to health and the environment.
The workshop opened with a proposal put forth by the chairmen, Kevin Land from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in South Africa and Jan Korvink from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany. It was suggested that the outcome of the meeting should be the collaborative effort of experts in various fields working on a single extreme PoC project with combined expertise and combined resources, where each group would focus on an aspect of the bigger project with the common goal of addressing one defined problem.
The conference started with presentations from clinicians and pathologists whose daily work involves diagnostic testing and interactions with patients for whom rapid PoC tests would ultimately be aimed. Point of care is defined as a low cost, rapid diagnostic test or service that can be completed at the point of testing, independent of a centralised high infrastructure laboratory. In 2014 the recorded population of South Africans living in rural settings was 35.7%. Such settings do not have the infrastructure for high-tech laboratory and medical care facilities. In many instances visiting a clinic for medical attention comes at a cost of a day’s wage while also incurring travelling expenses. Furthermore, many people do not make the required follow up visits to receive results or treatment. Therefore PoC tests are well suited to the African landscape where clinics and medical facilities are far from rural communities.
The event presented work by industry partners and representatives from commercial companies which provided a fresh outlook on collaborative networks. This bridged the gap between academics and industry where the latter can serve to provide well established platforms that can be integrated into developed or developing technology without re-inventing the wheel. This provides a twofold advantage, mainly reduction to development costs and time to market.
Paper based microfluidic devices or µPADs are an attractive platform for diagnostic tests. Paper is cheap, easily accessible and easily printed on; it can be burnt and therefore there is no need for costly biohazard waste disposable facilities. Paper is easily stacked making it easy to transport and therefore deliverable to end users. Furthermore, paper is self-wetting and does not require instrumentation for readout. Therefore, paper based tests are gaining more recognition as the solution to PoC tests as it meets many of the ASSURED criteria for rapid PoC. Needless to say, there are many research groups developing PoC tests using paper substrates and this was showcased at the workshop. Some of the technologies presented at the Micro-Med-A workshop showed paper based PoC applications in the developmental stage of research for the detection of toxic metals and bacterial detection in the environment. This further emphasised that paper based tests can address an important niche in diagnostics.
The workshop fostered an environment for excitement in the field of microsystems for African health through many interactive discussions and insights from participants of various backgrounds. The workshop enabled new networks to be established, while strengthening existing ones, and mapped the overall bigger picture of what is required to address health issues, particularly in under-resourced settings such as those in rural Africa and India.
The workshop closed with many suggestions from delegates for future meetings with the groundwork being laid for collaborative efforts. Information on this workshop can be found at www.micromed2015.co.za. The next workshop will be held in September 2017. People interested in receiving details once they are available should contact Kevin Land.
Delegates who attended the MicroMed 2015 workshop in South Africa.
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The 10th “Pioneers of Miniaturization” Lectureship, sponsored by Lab on a Chip and Corning Incorporated and supported by the Chemical and Biological Microsystems Society (CBMS), is for early to mid-career scientists who have made extraordinary or outstanding contributions to the understanding or development of miniaturised systems.
This “Pioneers of Miniaturization” Lectureship will be presented to Professor Di Carlo at theµTAS 2015 Conference in Gyeongju, Korea, 25-29 October 2015. Professor Di Carlo will receive a certificate, a monetary award and will give a short lecture.
About the winner
Professor Di Carlo received his B.S. in Bioengineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 2002 and received a Ph.D. in Bioengineering from the University of California, Berkeley and San Francisco in 2006.
Professor Di Carlo is currently a Professor in the Department of Bioengineering at the University of California, Los Angeles, USA. Professor Di Carlo’s current research aims to exploit unique physics, microenvironment control and the potential for automation associated with miniaturized systems for applications in basic biology, medical diagnostics, material fabrication and cellular engineering.
Among other honours and awards, Professor Di Carlo has been awarded the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development award and the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR) Young Investigator Award in 2012, the Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Young Faculty Award in 2011, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s New Innovator Award and Coulter Translational Research Award in 2010.
For more details on Professor Di Carlo’s research please visit his lab homepage.
We invite registered μTAS participants to submit short videos (see full conditions of entry below) that are either scientifically or educationally focused. Videos may be fun, artistic or just surprising and unusual in order to meet these criteria.
Dolomite Microfluidics, innovators in microfluidic solutions, are supporting this competition with $2500 worth of Dolomite equipment as the prize.
If you think you have the necessary visual science to take home the prize, have a read of the entry conditions below!
Deadline: 26th October 2015
Video Award Submission Process – Easy 3 Step Process
Step 1.Sign-In to the Electronic Form Using Your Registration Number
Please have your Registration Number accessible. If you are unable to locate your Registration Number, please contact email@example.com.
Step 2. Fill in Remaining Information on Electronic Submission Form
Please fill in remaining information on the electronic submission form including title of image and your caption.
All entries are to be submitted online via this website as .mpg, .mp4, .mov, .avi or .wmv. Entries will not be accepted by email or post. Once your entry has been successfully uploaded and submitted, you will be given an entry number and you will be sent a confirmation email with the information you provided, minus the video. The ability to submit an video will close Monday,26 October 2015 at 23:59 Honolulu, Hawaii, USA time (HST. GMT minus 10 hours).
Deadline 26th October 2015 at 23:59 Honolulu, Hawaii, USA time
Since the earliest publications of the scientific world, the aesthetic value of scientific illustrations and images has been critical to many researchers. The illustrations and diagrams of earlier scientists such as Galileo and Da Vinci have become iconic symbols of science and the scientific thought process.
In current scientific literature, many scientists consider the selection of a publication as a “cover article” in a prestigious journal to be very complimentary.
Are you attending the µTAS 2015 Conference?
Would you like your image to be featured on the cover of Lab on a Chip?
Would you like to win a financial reward?
To draw attention to the aesthetic value in scientific illustration while still conveying scientific merit, NISTand Lab On a Chipare sponsoring this annual award. Applications are encouraged from authors in attendance of the µTAS Conference and the winner will be selected by a panel of senior scientists in the field of µTAS.
Applications must show a photograph, micrograph or other accurate representation of a system that would be of interest to the µTAS community and be represented in the final manuscript or presentation given at the Conference.
They must also contain a brief caption that describes the illustration’s content and its scientific merit. The winner will be selected on the basis of aesthetic eye appeal, artistic allure and scientific merit. In addition to having the image featured on the cover of Lab on a Chip, the winner will also receive a financial award at the Conference.
Art Award Submission Process – Easy 3 Step Process
Step 1. Sign-In to the Electronic Form Using Your Abstract/Manuscript Number
Step 2. Fill in Remaining Information on Electronic Submission Form
‘This new adhesive technology will make complex microfluidic patterns much simpler to assemble,’ says Ali Dhinojwala, from the University of Akron, US, who is also interested in mimicking the sticking power of geckos. ‘By incorporating mushroom-shape tips in the fabrication of the device, they demonstrate reversible seals with larger burst pressures than PDMS-based devices.’
Droplet microfluidics enables assays and reactions to be performed in droplets of reagent that are just a few nanolitres or picolitres in volume. The main advantages of this are that reactions can be performed in a massively parallel manner using hardly any reagent, and further miniaturisation to give femtolitre droplets promises to enable even higher-throughput with even lower reagent use.
The microfluidic model is etched into a calcite crystal
Scientists in Canada have developed a new microfluidic model carved from rock, which can replicate the conditions found in underground oil reservoirs in a laboratory with more accuracy than ever before. Using it to study the processes that occur in these reservoirs could lead to greater oil yields.
David Sinton’s group, at the University of Toronto, hope that the model they’ve developed will allow them to properly study the rock structure, and see how it’s affected by oil extraction techniques. The techniques could then be optimised to make them much more efficient.